Grant Morrison's 2008 storyline, "Batman R.I.P." featured Batman being physically and mentally broken by the enigmatic villain Doctor Hurt and attracted news coverage in advance of its highly promoted conclusion, which would speculated to feature the death of Bruce Wayne. However, though Batman is shown to possibly perish at the end of the arc, the two-issue arc "Last Rites", which leads into the crossover storylines "Final Crisis", shows that Batman survives his helicopter crash into the Gotham City River and returns to the Batcave, only to be summoned to the Hall of Justice by the JLA to help investigate the New God Orion's death. The story ends with Batman retrieving the god-killing bullet used to kill Orion, setting up its use in "Final Crisis". In the pages of Final Crisis Batman is reduced to a charred skeleton. In Final Crisis #7 Wayne is shown witnessing the passing of the first man, Anthro. Wayne's "death" sets up the three-issue Battle for the Cowl miniseries in which Wayne's ex-proteges compete for the "right" to assume the role of Batman, which concludes with Grayson becoming Batman, while Tim Drake takes on the identity of Red Robin. Dick and Damian continue as Batman and Robin, and in the crossover storyline "Blackest Night", what appears to be Bruce's corpse is reanimated as a Black Lantern zombie, but is later shown that Bruce's corpse is one of Darkseid's failed Batman clones. Dick and Batman's other friends conclude that Bruce is alive.
At age 14, Bruce embarked on a journey that took him to every continent as he sought to learn all the skills he would need to keep his vow. He studied criminology, forensics, and criminal psychology, and learned from manhunters and martial artists, mastering every fighting style. In time, Bruce forged himself into a living weapon to wage war on crime and injustice. On his return to Gotham, Bruce stalked street thugs as a plainclothes vigilante. Beaten by the very people he intended to protect, he barely survived his first night out. As he sat bleeding in his study at Wayne Manor Bruce knew that he had to first strike fear in the hearts of his foes. Just then, a bat crashed through the study window, giving Bruce the inspiration he needed.
Shondra Kinsolving: Shondra was a psychic and the half-sister of Benedict Asp. She had a brief love affair with Batman, having been brought in to help him when Bane broke his back. Before Bruce could officially commit to her, Benedict kidnapped her and turned her abilities to evil use. Batman eventually defeated Benedict, but the damage to Shondra's mind was too great. As she healed Bruce's lingering injuries, Shondra's psyche regressed back into childhood. Bruce paid for her care at a psychiatric institution, ensuring she received the best treatment for the rest of her life.
Storylines Batman and Son • Batman Eternal • Batman Incorporated • Batman R.I.P. • Batman Reborn • Battle for the Cowl • The Black Mirror • Blind Justice • Cataclysm • Contagion • The Dark Knight Returns • A Death in the Family • Death of the Family • Endgame • Face the Face • Fugitive • Gotham's Most Wanted • Hush • The Killing Joke • Knightfall • Last Rites • Legacy • A Lonely Place of Dying • The Long Halloween • Night of the Owls • No Man's Land • Officer Down • Prodigal • The Resurrection of Ra's al Ghul • The Return of Bruce Wayne • Strange Apparitions • Tales of the Demon • Tower of Babel • Troika • Under the Hood • War Games • Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader? • Where Were You On The Night Batman Was Killed? • Year One • Zero Year
Batman quickly goes to the GCPD headquarters, where the Joker's latest attack took place. Previously, he had defeated the Joker and sent him to prison, where an unnamed person surgically removed his face. Later at the Batcave, Batman runs several traces for on previously collected samples of Joker Venom to see if any was found on the scene at police headquarters. As several of Batman's allies call, offering assistance in taking down the Joker, Batman declines, saying that whatever the Joker is planning, it is between him and Batman. In that moment, the Joker broadcasts a message on live TV, saying that he will kill Mayor Hady. The GCPD reinforces the City Hall to protect the Mayor, but the Joker poisons all the cops and security guards, leaving Batman, Commissioner Gordon and the Mayor as the only survivors. Batman investigates the chemical compounds used on the cops and finds three additional non-active chemicals: Aspirin, Chlorine, and Ethane. A, C, E. Batman realizes that the Joker is sending him back where it all started; to A.C.E. Chemicals. There, he finds a person dressed as the Red Hood. Batman is aware that the mysterious stranger is not the Joker, but suddenly, he is knocked aside by a giant wooden mallet. Batman falls into an empty chemical vat, while the stranger reveals herself as Harley Quinn. A chemical bath begins to pour into the vat, while Harley proclaims that the Joker is planning something not even she can comprehend.
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Villains Amygdala • Anarky • Bane • Black Glove • Black Mask • Black Spider • Blockbuster • Calculator • Calendar Man • Carmine Falcone • Catman • Catwoman • Cavalier • Charlatan • Clayface • Club of Villains • Cluemaster • Copperhead • Court of Owls • Crazy Quilt • Crime Doctor • Crimesmith • David Cain • Deacon Blackfire • Deadshot • Deathstroke • Doctor Death • Doctor Dedalus • Doctor Double X • Doctor Phosphorus • Doctor Hurt • Electrocutioner • Firebug • Firefly • Fright • Great White Shark • Harley Quinn • Hugo Strange • Humpty Dumpty • Hush • Hypnotic • Jane Doe • Jeremiah Arkham • Joe Chill • Joker • Joker's Daughter • KGBeast • Killer Croc • Killer Moth • King Snake • King Tut • Kite-Man • Lady Shiva • League of Assassins • Leviathan • Lew Moxon • Lex Luthor • Lock-Up • Lord Death Man • Mad Hatter • Mad Monk • Magpie • Man-Bat • Maxie Zeus • Merlyn • Mister Freeze • Mister Zsasz • Music Meister • Nocturna • Nyssa Raatko • Owlman • Penguin • Pigeon • Poison Ivy • Professor Pyg • Prometheus • Ra's al Ghul • Ratcatcher • Red Hood • Reverse-Flash • Riddler • Rupert Thorne • Roxy Rocket • Sal Maroni • Scarecrow • Solomon Grundy • Spellbinder • Talia al Ghul • Tally Man • Three Ghosts of Batman • Tony Zucco • Tweedledee and Tweedledum • Two-Face • Ubu • Ventriloquist • White Ghost • Wrath
Batman is probably the character with the highest number of romantic relationships in the DC Universe. Unlike Superman and Wonder Woman, characters that have been in publication for as long as Batman, the Dark Knight has never had a long-standing leading partner and instead, he has been constantly switching interests when it comes to romance. This is due to the nature of Batman's character; it is difficult for him to maintain a serious relationship with a woman as a result of his obsession with his crusade against crime. On the other hand, Bruce Wayne, Batman's alter-ego, has managed to have a few relationships with ladies of his interest, but they always come to a rather abrupt end because of the lack of trust and constant absence shown by Wayne, which has earned him the reputation as a notorious playboy.
After the Commissioner Gordon Batman armor experiment ended (with Gordon doing quite well, really, just not quite the same levels as the main man), Bruce Wayne returned as Batman, wearing a brand-new costume designed by Capullo. The best thing about the costume is that it really looks like the type of outfit that a superhero can move in, which was a marked improvement over the last two outfits. It looks like something an actual person could wear.
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Batman was one of the few superhero characters to be continuously published as interest in the genre waned during the 1950s. In the story "The Mightiest Team in the World" in Superman #76 (June 1952), Batman teams up with Superman for the first time and the pair discover each other's secret identity. Following the success of this story, World's Finest Comics was revamped so it featured stories starring both heroes together, instead of the separate Batman and Superman features that had been running before. The team-up of the characters was "a financial success in an era when those were few and far between"; this series of stories ran until the book's cancellation in 1986.
Tim Drake was barely more than a toddler when he sat in the stands at Haly's Circus and watched the Flying Graysons fall to their doom. Tim was transfixed as the Dark Knight swooped down to comfort young Dick Grayson. The moment was burned into his memory. Years later, Tim saw news reports of an unhinged Batman becoming more and more violent following the death of the second Robin, Jason Todd. Using his detective skills, Tim deduced the secret identity of Batman and the first Boy Wonder, Dick Grayson.
In most interpretations, Batman has a moral code against killing or maiming his enemies, believing that doing so will make him no better than the criminals he fights. Some storylines have also depicted him losing his sanity after "breaking" this rule, including the Batman: Red Rain trilogy. This has also lead to him not using firearms within his operations, though likely due to their involvement in his parent's murder.
Pamela Isley (Poison Ivy): Poison Ivy is a villain who often relies on seduction and the manipulation of pheromones to drive men around her to obey. This is no different with Batman, who initially confused the lust and desire caused by Ivy's methods for love. Ivy has a somewhat love/hate relationship with Batman; on some occasions she claims to love him and desires his affection, while on others she is more than willing to kill him. Bruce and Pamela had a brief but genuine romantic relationship after he helped to cure her of her condition, but this came to an end when Pamela seemingly died in an attempt to turn herself back into Poison Ivy.
Master Martial Artist: Batman has entirely mastered and even perfected every single form of hand-to-hand combat known to man and is one of the finest human combatants Earth has ever known. He was trained around the world for years to master multiple martial arts. Master Kirigi stated to Bruce that he is a natural genius in fighting due to "his great violent nature inside of him". Even Karate Kid of the future was very surprised that Bruce adapted and learned future-style combat in seconds that he never even experienced. He has completely mastered all unarmed hand-to hand combat styles of martial arts including but not limited to MMA, Muay Thai, Escrima, Krav Maga, Capoeira, Savate, Yawyan, Taekwondo, Judo, Jui-jitsu Brazilian jiu-jitsu, Ninjutsu, Kendo, Fencing, Kenjutsu, Kali, Bojutsu, Wrestling, Francombat, Boxing, Kickboxing, Hapkido, Sambo, Wing Chun, Parkour, Shorin Ryu, Silat, Chin Na, Kyudo, Aikido, Varma Ati, Jeet Kune Do, Shaolin, Ba Gua, Hung Gar, Tai Chi, Kung Fu, Kenpo, and Karate. His primary form of combat is a harmonious mixture of Jui-Jitsu, Taekwondo, Judo, Muay Thai, Savate, Karate, Kung Fu, Boxing, Capoeira, Krav Maga, Aikido, and Ninjutsu. Batman has proven he easily defeat a highly trained Green Beret within seconds, defeat multiple groups of armed opponents, fight evenly with Lady Shiva and Deathstroke multiple times, and defeat enemies that are physically superior to him through the use of sheer skill. He has also trained many other people to be the fighters they are (Nightwing, Red Hood, Tim Drake, and so on) and it can be inferred from him turning them into the fighters that they are that he is indeed a skilled fighter.
The early, pulp-inflected portrayal of Batman started to soften in Detective Comics #38 (April 1940) with the introduction of Robin, Batman's junior counterpart. Robin was introduced, based on Finger's suggestion, because Batman needed a "Watson" with whom Batman could talk. Sales nearly doubled, despite Kane's preference for a solo Batman, and it sparked a proliferation of "kid sidekicks". The first issue of the solo spin-off series Batman was notable not only for introducing two of his most persistent enemies, the Joker and Catwoman, but for a pre-Robin inventory story, originally meant for Detective Comics #38, in which Batman shoots some monstrous giants to death. That story prompted editor Whitney Ellsworth to decree that the character could no longer kill or use a gun.
Following the 2016 DC Rebirth continuity reboot, Batman and Catwoman work together in the third volume of Batman. The two also have a romantic relationship, in which they are shown having a sexual encounter on a rooftop and sleeping together. Bruce proposes to Selina in Batman vol. 3, #24 (2017), and in issue #32, Selina asks Bruce to propose to her again. When he does so, she says, "Yes."